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View Diary: 30 Year Oil Contracts in Iraq for BP, Exxon, Shell (178 comments)

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  •  Important point. This just sucks us further into (25+ / 0-)

    dependence on Mideast oil and sets us up for future conflicts.  We should be moving in the opposite direction.

    •  30 more years of backasswardness and (18+ / 0-)

      death and destruction.  I won't live long enough to see this war end.

    •  Problem is, there is no substitute for oil, (16+ / 0-)

      only a bunch of stop gap measures that will not allow us to keep our "way of life". Electricity is not that hard, but there are no substitutes for transportation and most critically agriculture. "Modern agriculture" produced much higher yields, which in turn has created much larger populations, by the use of "petro chemicals"... fertilizers and pesticides. Each calorie of food we eat was produced by using 10 calories of energy from oil, so we are basically eating the stuff. Harvesting wind power or solar energy does nothing to address that. That's why we are in Iraq to start with, because the oil companies realized that we are about to hit the peak in oil production, the point when demand catches up with supply and the cheap oil our lives are build upon disapeers. It would have made better sence to try and change our life styles and cooperate world wide to address this problem, but civilizations have seldom reacted that way. When resource depletion has reared it's head in the past, the first move is usually what we see happening now. We really set this up long ago when Americans rejected Jimmy Carter's attempt to tell us the truth, opting instead for Ronnie's promise that we didn't need to change our lives to deal with oil depletion.

      Perhaps Bush's failure might help us make the hard choises that might allow for a softer landing. All the more reason why we need Al Gore.

      •  Peak Oil is a ruse (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        acquittal, Boston Boomer, bluemosaic

        The most strident propagators of the Peak Oil theory all use data from the oil industry (hardly a trustworthy source of information). New technology lowers the cost of extraction all the time - to say nothing of the technologies being suppressed, which ventures into slightly tinfoil country, so I'll leave it at that.

        In my view, Peak Oil is better seen as a cover for their real goal, set out in Dick Cheney's energy task force. That is, to seize the easily accessible oil fields of Iraq and use them to break the power of OPEC. Fundamentally, it is a move to protect the dollar as the denomination of the petrodollar economy, not so much the Peak Oil thing, based on the stated goals of the PNAC.

        "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." -- Groucho Marx

        by rolandzebub on Sun Jan 07, 2007 at 07:44:06 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  RedState also has a posting debunking Peak Oil... (0+ / 0-)

          so, I wouldn't be so sure that "peak oil" is a Republican ruse.
          See RedState posting

          After hearing Kevin Phillips speak about Peak Oil at a book signing last year, I read every book and article I could find on the subject. Unfortunately, I still haven't reached a conclusion! Like Global Warming, there are "experts" on both sides doing everything they can to win people to their point of view. To make matters worse, when Saudia Arabia and other OPEC countries nationalized their oil industries, they closed the books to outsiders. We really don't know how much is being produced in these countries, much less how much they have left.

          I can tell you, though, part of the Peak Oil confusion arises from the semantics. Peak Oil does not refer to the point at which we run out of oil. Instead, it refers to a point at which maximum production is reached. Wikipedia overs a good overview:

          Hubbert's peak can refer to the peaking of production of a particular area, which has now been observed for many fields and regions. "Peak Oil" as a proper noun, or Hubbert's peak applied more generally, refers to a singular event in history: the peak of the entire planet's oil production. After Peak Oil, according to the Hubbert Peak Theory, the rate of oil production on Earth will enter a terminal decline. Based on his theory, in a paper[1] he presented to the American Petroleum Institute in 1956, Hubbert correctly predicted that production of oil from conventional sources would peak in the continental United States around 1965-1970 (actual peak was 1970). Hubbert further predicted a worldwide peak at "about half a century" from publication. Many observers such as Kenneth S. Deffeyes, Matthew Simmons, and James Howard Kunstler believe that because of the high dependence of most modern industrial nations on inexpensive oil, the impending post-peak production decline and resulting severe price increases will herald grim implications for the future global economic outlook.

          For those interested in the topic, I recommend reading Kevin Phillip's book: American Theocracy. The book is also fascinating for other reasons, as you can probably tell from its title!

          I also recommend Matthew Simmon's book, Twilight in the Desert. Matthew Simmons also has links to all his PPT Presentations at his website...particularly interesting is one he gave to the DOD in June 2006.  

          •  Let's face it.... (0+ / 0-)

            Most of the easy exploration is already done.  Spindeltop isn't going to appear again in downtown Beaumont anytime soon.  

            Another interesting facet of this industry.  I did my Master's thesis in enhanced oil recovery.  Usually, 70-75% of the hydrocarbons are left behind, usually due to the fact that only some of the oil actually flows, and the rest if it is caught up in the rock matrix, tied up with all the water in the formation, and the lack of remaining pressure in the formation (among other things).  

            Back in the 70s, the US government put a lot of research effort in finding ways to better optimize oilfield production.  Now, finally, people are pulling out the old work from 20 and 30 years ago and trying to use it for something.  I would support the government helping find ways to optimizing production we now have, and finding ways to reopen capped fields that everyone knows are still out there.  

            On a semi-unrelated topic, the electric generation industry is fighting the introduction of integrated-gas-combined-cycle (IGCC) coal fired power plants.  Now, oil fields need pressure to push oil the surface.  CO2 is a very commonly used method to enhance oil recovery, and is sitting at the end of a pipe waiting for somewhere to go at the end of the IGCC process.  Put the IGCC plants in the oil fields, and we may have a winner!  Another byproduct of electricity production is lots of low quality steam - see that plume at the cooling tower (that's steam, not smoke) at any power plant?  That can also be injected into oil fields (in some cases, espicially California heavy crudes) to get more life out of existing fields.

            Innovation, anyone?

      •  oh no (14+ / 0-)

        Who cares?  Industrial farming is far from sustainable.  The soils that are being exploited are not capable of supporting food any longer, which is why we need so much damn fertilizer.  Mono-cropping leads to more pests, which is why we need more pesticides, and then to top it off we need to ship all that food around the continent, and import some (more fucking oil).

        Dissappeared are the local farms that connect you to you food source.  Local food sources make so much more sense it is not funny, except now we have a bunch of suburban developments (not sustainable) on our prime growing lands.  We are disconnected from the earth and the cycles, aka we eat strawberries in the winter.  Don't get me wrong, i like strawberries, but i'd like them even more if i knew where they came from, knew when they were being harvested so i could get first pick.  I could buy excess, preserve the rest and guess what?  Not waste a bunch of fucking oil on unsustainable farming practices.

        It is much much cheaper to ship seed than to ship produce.  Think of the waste that goes into the cooling process alone!

        I wish this planet would run out of oil tomorrow.  I don't care that our "way of life" wouldn't be sustained, it can't anyway.  The sooner we recognize this, the sooner we can get back into balance and harmony with the earth.

        Example:  I live in NY and i see Washington apples at the supermarket.  WTF?  I am SURROUNED by apple orchards!  NY apples are delicious, this makes no sense!

        •  funny you mention... (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          trifecta, gabie

          I saw some strawberries in my market here in Sweden and thought hmmm... The label says they were 'Palestinian,' the address Tel Aviv... I think I bought something else.

        •  I'm with you, as a country we need to change (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          trifecta, ChaosMouse

          our lifestyles. starting with big oil, healthcare, social security, the list goes on and on. I think because of the current food supply system we have killed the cheasapeake bay. the bluecrabs you can buy in baltimore are imported from the gulfcoast states. Fertilizers, runoff, etc..., from the poultry 'camps', and farms have deoxygenated the water, and polluted it. the fish in it are toxic and new diseases have spawned on them. Elsewhere, I hear horror stories of the hog 'farms' from the people who live downstream of them, and can imagine the big meatpacking 'plants' in the midwest. we have a lot of work to do as a country and I hope the 110th congress starts us down that path.

        •  In a logical world (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          trifecta, ChaosMouse

          There would be laws about what could be shipped where.     If we tried that it would be decried as government intervention (totally unlike the Presnit reading your mail).

      •  Please if we developed the combustible engine (5+ / 0-)

        They we have the ability to create a interchangeable fuel alternative.  The fact is we have choosen not to.  Because all of the money and power have been driven by the oil industry.

        Everyone acts like are brains died the day we started the first fuel driven engine.  the truth of the matters is at every avenue the corporate interest that had current market strength that was supported by oil has drowned out any type of ability to change and compete.  

        Some "free market" the truth is there is no free market - just the guize of keeping power with the few.

        Unleash the potential to make a difference

        by totallynext on Sun Jan 07, 2007 at 08:13:30 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  There are many alternatives (7+ / 0-)

        Just replacing regular light bulbs (ie, not even manufacturing them anymore) would cut our consumption of energy, and now we also have LED light bulbs which perform better then the fluorescent ones.

        Here is but one example: require that all new christmas lights be led, give a tax rebate for anyone who replaces their old lights with these new ones.  Do the same for the lights we use all year.

        Further, the technology is there for solar power as well, there are also things like instant on water heaters (no huge tank, the water is heated as you use it), the list is endless of what we could do now.

        In addition, how about solar panels on electric cars so they can "recharge" when people park them outside as they go inside to work?  

        We not only have the ability to change things now, we can do much more in the near future, and even more in the distant future, do more that will cut our dependence on oil.

      •  Mass transit is a big part of the answer (5+ / 0-)

        The automobile, asphalt and rubber industries did everything over the 20th century to strangle mass transit. The Republican congress did everything to drown Amtrak to the point where Amtrak is a second rate unreliable system.

        If there were plenty of reliable mass transit inside cities and between cities and suburbs, people would use it.

        Build it and they will come has never been a truer statement. The extreme right wing reactionary profit seeking opposition to trains and trolleys is a major scandal.

        You want clean air? Build mass transit.

        Europe certainly knows that and has built a respectable transit system alongside much-reduced car usage. We can do it too. Where is the will to get rid of 90 mile an hour automobile commercials that smack us from media? Certainly the media, which directly profits from reactionary transportation commercials, will not encourage it.

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